Key to the Cure: Finding out the Actual Mechanism of Tinnitus

Discussion in 'Research News' started by Ozzy, Jan 8, 2014.

    1. erik
      Cool

      erik Member Benefactor Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Washington State, USA
      Tinnitus Since:
      04/15/2012 or earlier?
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Most likely hearing loss
      How about cool sunglasses with built in ear plugs? Since the ends of the glasses lay over your ears, you can have a cool end piece with a design or logo which is the ear plug part HA HA;)

      There is a small concert venue in my city that hands out ear plugs free at every event. This should be the standard.
       
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    2. AUTHOR
      AUTHOR
      Ozzy
      Wishful

      Ozzy Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Istanbul / Turkey
      Tinnitus Since:
      12.2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      * Ear infection * 20 years later huge sound increase due to stress


      Thank you LadyDi for your comments. Yeah, I loved Michael J. Fox's that tag line. This is from his book I read about him. The name of the book is "Lucky Man". His book made me feel better. Although his problem is a big one, still he is in good spirits. And he says that his disease has taught him so much. Another quote from him:

      If you were to rush into this room right now and announce that you had struck a deal - with God, Allah, Buddha, Christ, Krishna, Bill Gates, whomever - in which the ten years since my diagnosis could be magically taken away, traded in for ten more years as the person I was before - I would, without a moment's hesitation, tell you to take a hike.” ― Michael J. Fox, "Lucky Man: A Memoir"

      Yes, we need a person like him but who has tinnitus instead, who steps forward and follow his example.
      I'm always reading about celebrities who have tinnitus. It reminds me once again that I'm not the only one who has it. Wouldn't it be nice, if a rock-star who has T, who at least shouts like this during a live concert:
      "And now folks... this song goes for people who have tinnitus" :)

      Even this would create some sort of awareness. Hopefully one day! :)
       
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    3. Erlend
      Question it

      Erlend Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Scandinavia
      Tinnitus Since:
      05/2013
      Hair cells being sensitive means that they are more easily activated, not that it hurts or anything to do with hearing thresholds.
       
    4. Per

      Per Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2013
      The hub for the nerves is the central nervous system, and stress/nerve activity is also connected. Stress can cause and create:

      1 Acceleration of heart rate
      2. Dilation of coronary arteries
      3. Dilation of bronchial tubes
      4. Increase in force of heart contractions
      5. Increase in rate of metabolism
      6. Increase in anxiety
      7. Increase in gastrointestinal motility
      8. Increase in rate and depth of respiration
      9. Decrease in feeling of tiredness
      10. Decrease in Salvation (dry mouth)
      11. diarrhea
      12 nausea
      13 indigestion
      14 sphincter of Oddi spasms
      15 spastic colon
      16 irritable bowel syndrome
      17 constipation colds and sinus infections
      18 vaginal yeast infection
      19 bladder infections
      20 fiber myalgia
      21 arthritis
      22 high blood pressure
      23 heart disease
      24 hyperventilation
      25 asthma
      26 headaches
      27 migraines
      28. Dilation of pupils


      ...and T&H?

      http://www.indiana.edu/~engs/hints/stress1.htm

      So, could T&H be excluded from the list and if so why? Hyperactive neurons in the auditory cortex seems to be corresponding with both stress, anxiety, depression and mental trauma in general. If T is a brain in constant seizure mode (like some neuroscientist believe) it's like a type of brain disorder. Then it's all connected to the same factors that creates all these illnesses and conditions. Just saying...
       
    5. Stina
      Psychedelic

      Stina Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Tartu
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/13
      Yes but that only goes for the patients with no acoustic trauma I think... for the ones only who got it out of the blue. Also I think only extreme stress can actually create conditions... I think its more likely that stress is a contributor. I have had arthritis for 15 years and I know that stress can make it worse but didnt cause it.
       
    6. Per

      Per Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2013
      But a plausible theory could be that ANY trauma is stress related, either it be mental or acoustic. An acoustic trauma is in essence a chock to the central nervous system, it could be firecracker, loudspeaker sound, fire alarm, rockets, grenades, shouting close to ear etc. Scientist have taken interest in why so many soldiers return with T, it's not necessary because they have been exposed to loud noise but it's the setting and environment that they have received these noises in, thus creating severe stress and trauma. They become stuck in a position of fight or flight, and that is purely a state of mind. Not a "state of ear." This is why so many neuroscientist are classifying T as a brain disorder and/or a constant shock or seizure state. A fiddle held close to the ear can create acoustic trauma and so can a sudden bang from fireworks. I believe the onset of T can be complex but stress and mental trauma seems to be playing a vital role in so many parts of the organs that is included in this mess. For some who have cochlea damage or deafness stress can almost always increase the perception of the phantom noises. This because the overactive neurons in the auditory cortex is firing at a mad and uncontrollable rate. It's in a seizure state, for some this state is directly related to the fight or flight response which in turn also can be promoted by an acoustic trauma.

      Acoustic trauma doesn't have to be created in a "do or die" situation but can just as easily come from a pleasurable concert.
       
    7. Stina
      Psychedelic

      Stina Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Tartu
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/13
      Could be also true.. I think in my case prolonged high stress levels probably triggered it as well - 2013 was the worst year ever:( and it just seems to be getting worse.
       
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    8. Per

      Per Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2013
      Stina, I know what your talking about. the cause of my T&H is not proven in a "court of law" either, it's been a lot of guesswork and theories. My T is very loud as well. Could be stress, could be a hidden hearing loss, could be toxic medication, could be all of these and then some factors. All I know is that I've had a ton of stress and life altering experiences, been going on for years and years. We are human beings and our threshold is at max capacity now, that's how I feel. I need to find a new pathway in life.

      It's good to debate this topic cause ENT's don't give a damn about the onset. My perception may be as good or bad as the next one. All I know is that stress plays a vital role in our physical state, but you know that all too well yourself. Let's fight this thing - but we need to stay calm. Less stress is key. A very hard thing to do.
       
    9. Stina
      Psychedelic

      Stina Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Tartu
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/13
      Well if it really is stress I think there are many ways to avoid it. Last winter I broke my arm and of course, that created a trauma in my brain which prevents healing. I therefore visited a reflexologist and she really helped me reduce the stress. I think if a person is under severe stress there are loads of things one can do - yoga, cognitive therapy (I dont mean only for T but for everything), acupuncture, meditating, religion and so on. Have you tried anything though?
       
    10. Jeff M.
      Pooptoast

      Jeff M. Member Benefactor

      Location:
      La Jolla, CA
      Tinnitus Since:
      Oct. 2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Idiopathic
      o_O
      Stina, I agree 2013 WAS the worst year ever!! I was under alot of stress when my T started, and I attributed it at the time to that. Stress coming from my work. Yet, I have made a complete career change no an absolutely NO stress job, and my T is as bad as it was when it started. I fully anticipated a decrease in the severity of my T once I de-stressed my life, but no lucko_O.
       
    11. Stina
      Psychedelic

      Stina Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Tartu
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/13
      Well maybe you would benefit from some kind of therapy?? I think in a way stress and traumas can gather inside the body? If you visit a trained professional it wouldnt probably hurt.
       
    12. Stina
      Psychedelic

      Stina Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Tartu
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/13
      Some information: http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/16951850
       
    13. dan
      Chatty

      dan Member Hall of Fame

      Location:
      Toronto, Canada
      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2011
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Loud noise
      Per I am a classic example of your theory. I was initially exposed to a fire alarm and later experienced very very mild tinnitus intermittently. After about 2 months I went to see some fireworks which were not that loud but I had a panic attack because of the claustrophobia, the bright lights and semi loud fireworks. I left the show with no tinnitus but what do you know, the next morning I woke up with terrible intractable maddeningly loud tinnitus that`s been ruining my life for 2.5 years now.
      I think my case falls within your theory, don't your think.
       
    14. Jeff M.
      Pooptoast

      Jeff M. Member Benefactor

      Location:
      La Jolla, CA
      Tinnitus Since:
      Oct. 2012
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Idiopathic
      Thanks for the link Stina! Very interesting! I did try a 2 month run of acupuncture with unfortunately no results :(. But am looking into some other therapies like Chiropractic Neuropathy and Transcranial Magnetic Stimulation. Actually looking for more inputon both of these, going to post a thread today.
       
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    15. Stina
      Psychedelic

      Stina Member Benefactor

      Location:
      Tartu
      Tinnitus Since:
      11/13
      I actually read somewhere that with acupuncture it could take 10-15x before any results are noticed. But of course it does not work for everyone.
      I think in your case the stress never really stopped- problems at worked created Tinnitus and after changing your job you couldnt get relaxed because of it...
       
    16. Per

      Per Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2013
      It's impossible to have tried everything but I have shared my attempts at seeking treatment in different posts here on TT. Had a Skype talk session with a psychosomatic T therapist and I've read some books on stress management. I actually just finished one today, I'm trying to apply the information I retrieve but it takes a 180 degree turn, life has become a habit of stress. For me it's the inner stress and anxiety that is the hardest, cause that is so tuff to change. I've just started working again after several years off as well, so the demands of the world is sucking energy. I've also booked an appointment at an osteopath therapist and I have more books to read that I have borrowed from the library. So I think I have started a process. But the most important thing is to preform stress reducing tasks without making an achievement out of it, cause then stressing down becomes a stress factor.

      I'm pretty stocked on breathing techniques cause my breathing is too short and tens. I also hope to get rid of my constant analysis of past and future. Another factor is my physical issues, I had another surgery for shoulder pains in November and more is coming, so I'm battling that at the same time. I think this stress management thing is going to last for a long time. One year, two years. Who knows. Takes time to change. The million dollar question is if reduced stress will reverse the T and even make it go away, either in my mental perception or for real. I do believe it will decrease the strength and loudness, that is my authentic hope as long as no medical doctor can prove that my inner ear anatomy is damaged - this is impossible to reveal anyhow at this moment in time.
       
    17. Zimichael

      Zimichael Member Benefactor

      Location:
      N. California
      Tinnitus Since:
      (1956) > 1980 > 2006 > 2012 > (2015)
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ac. Trauma & Ac.Trauma + Meds.
      Well, this is yet another really great and informative thread!

      Regarding stress and tinnitus. Yes and no for me...When I was 6 years old and we were a bunch of kids having fun throwing fire-crackers at each other on Guy Fawkes night, I sure was not stressed. Just the opposite...Yet I got tinnitus.

      However, my next bump up I sure was stressed - living with my new parents-in-law with classic "mother-in-law" clash! Plus the loud sound c/o hammering and demolition that did the damage.

      Third bump up in volume I was so sick I did not know whether I was stressed or not. The ototoxic drugs sure did not care, and trashed my hearing because they were BAD meds for me...and obviously many others as they score way up in the worst of the worst.

      Fourth time I was actually happy! I loved pissing off big corporate executives trying to trample all over people and getting exposed and called to task - which is what the meeting I was in was about. But I got more tinnitus...even though I was the opposite of stressed. It was just sound for too long of a time I guess.

      Complex problem this beast!
       
    18. Per

      Per Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2013
      @Zimichael,

      I've read your profile, does this mean you have experienced absolutely quite periods as well? Since you've had several spikes like you describe, have you concluded that your T is noise inducted and stress related at the same time, or does stress spike your T on top of the damage from the noise inducted incidents? Does the mentally challenging periods bring further damage to the inner ear organs by release of stress hormones do you think?

      Also, do you think the medical knowledge is better now in terms of T&H compared to when you first started going to docs about your condition? To me it seems like ENTs are still at level zero with this and I can't even imagine how it was like 30+ years ago. Science has obviously gone trough some trial and error periods as expected trough time, but are we still looking at another 35 years of darkness in terms of treating our condition?!
       
    19. Zimichael

      Zimichael Member Benefactor

      Location:
      N. California
      Tinnitus Since:
      (1956) > 1980 > 2006 > 2012 > (2015)
      Cause of Tinnitus:
      Ac. Trauma & Ac.Trauma + Meds.
      Per...Wow, how do I keep all this brief?! I'll give you the bare bones answers and realize there is a lot more between the blanks. In fact maybe I should follow IWLM's post about tips living with tinnitus for 40 years, as I've had it for 58 years! another time though.

      No, I have never experienced any quiet periods since I first got tinnitus. Volume levels have stayed constant at each new "jump up", at that new level. However, when I first got tinnitus (the medium-high pitched, classical, EEEEEEEE type) it was quiet enough that I only heard it in relative silence. I almost had to listen for it. Plus as a kid I adapted pretty quick anyhow. Too many snakes to catch and games to play so it did not slow me down.

      With each successive jump up the volume objectively increased. However, with the second jump up there was in retrospect, only minor hyperacusis that must have faded off after a few years. I know this because I went to quite a few loud Halloween parties for a major winery I used to work for in the 80's and early 90's and I could handle it. The tinnitus would ring a little louder when I lay down (maybe a bit 'inebriated' :notworthy: perhaps) to sleep, but was normal volume next morning. Also I joined a modern dance troupe in the late 90's (a late bloomer!) and was obviously fine on stage with music and clapping and all that stuff for nearly 10 years.

      Thus I lived a normal life with this pretty loud 'tinnitus only'. (In fact semi-loud tinnitus only is a helluva lot easier to live with than T with hyperacusis added!). I would always protect with earmuffs when weed-whipping or driving heavy machinery though, and I did not go to rock concerts, etc. without earplugs.

      Then came the ototoxic antibiotics in 2006. Whole new ball-game! MUCH louder tinnitus + hyperacusis and MUCH harder to live with. Serious protection. Serious devastation of my normal life. No dance! I was crushed.
      But...over 6 years it finally went down enough and I adapted enough that I was able to dance again and even be on stage, (which is actually quieter than being in the audience), though did stick my fingers in my ears when the clapping got too much. I could not dance with earplugs in - too old too clumsy, so I was 'unprotected'. Amazing. I never thought I would get there again.

      Fourth jump up, 2012.....Arrrggggggggggggggg! This is REALLY LOUD!!! It is almost all I hear and it is constant, and it "bings up" in mini-spikes at any trigger like a knife hitting a ceramic plate at the dinner table (I use wooden plates now). It does not "spike" like I read about here...just very short-lived then back to base volume. However, I avoid any chance of further damage as there is the massive fear of: "What if it goes up even higher???!!!" Which it can...as it has...four darn times!!!

      Yeah, I'm trying to keep it short...but the STRESS aspect.

      Well, stress does nothing to my tinnitus on a volume level. Does not change it at all. In fact if stressed with some crisis I actually get a little more distracted from the tinnitus because I have this emergency to deal with, or whatever. This may be less common than with most T sufferers. Sleep though helps me to cope as if lack of it I get more worn down and weaker. The volume however does not change, just "me".

      The MEDICAL KNOWLEDGE...Ha, ha. Well, it's not funny really, but my mother told me at age 6 that "They" would find a cure for "the ringing" in no time, as the guys in white coats were solving all the world's problems at light speed! This was the era of DDT, antibiotics, white bread for all, etc., etc., etc.

      So I'm still waiting! Though for sure there is a LOT more awareness about it than there was in the 1950's. No doubt about it. Hell, it seemed like my dad and most of the men who had been through WWII had "ringing in the ears" (for obvious reasons). The solution was to 'man up', grin and pretend you were fine. Huh, maybe that's why so many drank themselves into oblivion each night. Hard to tell as it seems like colonial Africa ran on alcohol consumption!

      "Basta"..."Genug"...Enough... Hope this answers your questions.

      Best, Zimichael
       
      • Informative Informative x 1
    20. Per

      Per Member

      Tinnitus Since:
      06/2013
      @Zimichael,

      Thanks for sharing. To me stress and preoccupation works a little different with my T. The latter is distracting and that's good. It's so difficult to debate T loudness as it's so based on individual aspects, but we all recognize a spike when we hear one! You have a great deal of experience in all of this.

      Yes, laughter is probably the best medicine against ignorant doctors. One would think and hope that your mother would be right some day in the big vast future, but that requires an engaged medical environment. It's crazy how low T&H is prioritized by docs in general.

      Old school medical science seems to be the norm in terms of T. Like you said it's man up' strategy. Perhaps I should pick up smoking again? Doctors advice...

      What Cigarette Do You Smoke Doctor?
       

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